Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on September 6, 2018

How to Become an Entrepreneur? 12 Tips from Successful Entrepreneurs

How to Become an Entrepreneur? 12 Tips from Successful Entrepreneurs

Being a successful entrepreneur doesn’t just happen to someone. People work hard, learn the ins-and-outs of their business, and apply the methods that work in order to become successful.

When you’re starting out as an entrepreneur, you want to make sure you know what makes successful entrepreneurs.

How to become an entrepreneur? What do successful entrepreneurs and business people like Bill Gates do to become so successful?

Here’re the secrets:

1. Never take “no” for an answer

Want to know why after so many let downs and disappointments, supper successful entrepreneurs still find their way to the top?

It’s because they never took “no” for an answer. This is the kind of spirit successful folks like Richard Branson have in them.

When you reach out for assistance from people, and they turn you down, do not take their response to your requests as a determinant factor to your success.

I once reached out to experts to interview them for a post I was writing and a particular expert told me my idea was already “beaten to death” and no one would be interested in it again.

I was let down by his response and thought to rethink my idea. But I did not.

I forged ahead with renewed strength and even reached out to more experts. After the post went live, I got so many positive responses from the community and the article was even mentioned on Forbes, and several other publications.

Advertising

Had I taken the response of that one responder who told me my idea was already beaten to death, I wouldn’t have had the success I had with the article.

As an entrepreneur, never take a “no” for an answer.

2. Work like you’re going to retire tomorrow

You know one thing about retirement? It makes us want to work harder to save more.

As an entrepreneur, you need to work like you’re going to retire tomorrow. In the spirit of every successful entrepreneur is the desire to work hard.

Successful entrepreneurs find fun and joy in hard work. So they never get tired. And when success finally comes, they’re just well-prepared for it.

3. Employ a mentor

One thing common with most successful entrepreneurs is they have mentors.

As an entrepreneur, you should have a successful role model whose experience will guide your career. This means you need someone who is successful and is willing to share their experiences with you.

If you find it difficult convincing your role model to mentor you, then work hard to impress them.

Besides, you could learn from someone by being an avid reader of their works. Most successful entrepreneurs are also prolific authors. Think Bill Gates or Richard Branson. They’ve all written books that teach their business principles and ideas.

4. Spy on your competitors every now and then

One good thing about entrepreneurship is that you have the freedom to also learn from your competitors. Chances are you have competitors that are way more successful than you are.

Advertising

What about the chances that they’ll be willing to teach you their trade? Very slim.

By spying on your most successful competitors, you can learn from their mistakes and apply their best practices to your business.

Buy their products, pose like a customer, and find out their weaknesses.

5. Copy the best challenger

Have you ever heard that copying others is a sin? Well, maybe in exam halls.

But get over it, this is not high school. In the business world, the best copycats tend to emerge the most successful.

Copy what works best from your best challenger and incorporate them into your business. This could include everything from their customer support approach or their marketing tactics.

6. Be humble and stay hungry

As an entrepreneur, you should learn to put your ego to check. You know what kills most businesses very fast? The big egos of their top executives.

Learn to espouse humility and always stay hungry as Steve Jobs always said. He was actually fired from the company he later came back to and saved!

By staying hungry, you’ll be willing to learn new things that could come in handy in the future. Not staying hungry breeds complacency and conceit in entrepreneurs.

The moment you become complacent, you allow others to overtake you and leave you behind.

Advertising

7. Do favors like it’s your talent

Learn to do favours without expecting anything in return. When you do favors for people, you get a sense of satisfaction in you that helps you stay motivated.

One thing I’ve also learned from successful entrepreneurs is the most successful never get tired of doing favors.

Neil Patel of QuickSprout has shared numerous stories of how helping people has moved his business forward. There’s even a research into why billionaires who give more of their wealth become even richer.

8. Move fast and improve quickly

In the entrepreneurial world, there’s nothing like taking it slow. Mark Zuckerberg even has a mantra for the importance of speed in business. He often says:

“Unless you are breaking stuff, you are not moving fast enough.”

When I wanted to get started into the internet marketing industry, Yasir Khan, the founder of QuantumSEOLabs, shared his story as a beginner with me:

“I started working with blogs like eZineArticles and then worked up the ladder…now own my company in Canada.”

Many who know EzineArticles today would not even take a second look at the site.

The bottom line is, don’t spend so much time on making decisions. Deliver first, and then improve constantly.

9. Move with a pack

The people you move with as an entrepreneur can also determine how soon you’re going to become successful. That is why it’s advisable to move with a pack of reliable people.

Advertising

10. Dream big

Don’t be afraid to dream big. Successful entrepreneurs achieve because of their big dreams.

The co-founders of Google once said their marketing officer once asked them who they wanted to market to and they responded by saying the whole world.

Well, if dreaming big hurts, Google wouldn’t be the gigantic corporation it is today.

11. Love yourself

Sound cliche? But it’s true. An entrepreneur should learn to love yourself.

Many people bother too much about pleasing others that they downright ignore their own feelings. In the entrepreneurial world, you need to give yourself all the love you can afford.

Most people won’t care about your feelings. Everybody is busy trying to win, so stop worrying about pleasing others and start loving yourself!

12. Employ smarter people

The people that work with you are going to play a huge role in the success of your business. Smart people build better businesses.

When the time is ripe for you to start hiring people, you need to seek out the smart ones. Seek for people that are smarter than you are.

To all entrepreneurs who want to become successful early in life, start dreaming big and give your time to others, but never forget to focus on yourself!

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

More by this author

How to Become an Entrepreneur? 12 Tips from Successful Entrepreneurs 3 Unusual Ways To Get More Out of Your Old Books 5 Wealth Habits All Successful Entrepreneurs Share 6 Ideas For A Perfect Home Exterior Design 6 Ways Technology is Changing the Way We Live

Trending in Productivity

1 The Science of Setting Goals (And How It Affects Your Brain) 2 What to Do When Bored at Work (And Why You Feel Bored Actually) 3 6 Effective Ways to Enhance Your Problem Solving Skills 4 How to Concentrate and Focus Better to Boost Productivity 5 15 Productive Things to Do When Bored (So Time Is Not Wasted)

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on July 17, 2019

The Science of Setting Goals (And How It Affects Your Brain)

The Science of Setting Goals (And How It Affects Your Brain)

What happens in our heads when we set goals?

Apparently a lot more than you’d think.

Goal setting isn’t quite so simple as deciding on the things you’d like to accomplish and working towards them.

According to the research of psychologists, neurologists, and other scientists, setting a goal invests ourselves into the target as if we’d already accomplished it. That is, by setting something as a goal, however small or large, however near or far in the future, a part of our brain believes that desired outcome is an essential part of who we are – setting up the conditions that drive us to work towards the goals to fulfill the brain’s self-image.

Apparently, the brain cannot distinguish between things we want and things we have. Neurologically, then, our brains treat the failure to achieve our goal the same way as it treats the loss of a valued possession. And up until the moment, the goal is achieved, we have failed to achieve it, setting up a constant tension that the brain seeks to resolve.

Advertising

Ideally, this tension is resolved by driving us towards accomplishment. In many cases, though, the brain simply responds to the loss, causing us to feel fear, anxiety, even anguish, depending on the value of the as-yet-unattained goal.

Love, Loss, Dopamine, and Our Dreams

The brains functions are carried out by a stew of chemicals called neurotransmitters. You’ve probably heard of serotonin, which plays a key role in our emotional life – most of the effective anti-depressant medications on the market are serotonin reuptake inhibitors, meaning they regulate serotonin levels in the brain leading to more stable moods.

Somewhat less well-known is another neurotransmitter, dopamine. Among other things, dopamine acts as a motivator, creating a sensation of pleasure when the brain is stimulated by achievement. Dopamine is also involved in maintaining attention – some forms of ADHD are linked to irregular responses to dopamine.[1]

So dopamine plays a key role in keeping us focused on our goals and motivating us to attain them, rewarding our attention and achievement by elevating our mood. That is, we feel good when we work towards our goals.

Dopamine is related to wanting – to desire. The attainment of the object of our desire releases dopamine into our brains and we feel good. Conversely, the frustration of our desires starves us of dopamine, causing anxiety and fear.

Advertising

One of the greatest desires is romantic love – the long-lasting, “till death do us part” kind. It’s no surprise, then, that romantic love is sustained, at least in part, through the constant flow of dopamine released in the presence – real or imagined – of our true love. Loss of romantic love cuts off that supply of dopamine, which is why it feels like you’re dying – your brain responds by triggering all sorts of anxiety-related responses.

Herein lies obsession, as we go to ever-increasing lengths in search of that dopamine reward. Stalking specialists warn against any kind of contact with a stalker, positive or negative, because any response at all triggers that reward mechanism. If you let the phone ring 50 times and finally pick up on the 51st ring to tell your stalker off, your stalker gets his or her reward, and learns that all s/he has to do is wait for the phone to ring 51 times.

Romantic love isn’t the only kind of desire that can create this kind of dopamine addiction, though – as Captain Ahab (from Moby Dick) knew well, any suitably important goal can become an obsession once the mind has established ownership.

The Neurology of Ownership

Ownership turns out to be about a lot more than just legal rights. When we own something, we invest a part of ourselves into it – it becomes an extension of ourselves.

In a famous experiment at Cornell University, researchers gave students school logo coffee mugs, and then offered to trade them chocolate bars for the mugs. Very few were willing to make the trade, no matter how much they professed to like chocolate. Big deal, right? Maybe they just really liked those mugs![2]

Advertising

But when they reversed the experiment, handing out chocolate and then offering to trade mugs for the candy, they found that now, few students were all that interested in the mugs. Apparently the key thing about the mugs or the chocolate wasn’t whether students valued whatever they had in their possession, but simply that they had it in their possession.

This phenomenon is called the “endowment effect”. In a nutshell, the endowment effect occurs when we take ownership of an object (or idea, or person); in becoming “ours” it becomes integrated with our sense of identity, making us reluctant to part with it (losing it is seen as a loss, which triggers that dopamine shut-off I discussed above).

Interestingly, researchers have found that the endowment effect doesn’t require actual ownership or even possession to come into play. In fact, it’s enough to have a reasonable expectation of future possession for us to start thinking of something as a part of us – as jilted lovers, gambling losers, and 7-year olds denied a toy at the store have all experienced.

The Upshot for Goal-Setters

So what does all this mean for would-be achievers?

On one hand, it’s a warning against setting unreasonable goals. The bigger the potential for positive growth a goal has, the more anxiety and stress your brain is going to create around it’s non-achievement.

Advertising

It also suggests that the common wisdom to limit your goals to a small number of reasonable, attainable objectives is good advice. The more goals you have, the more ends your brain thinks it “owns” and therefore the more grief and fear the absence of those ends is going to cause you.

On a more positive note, the fact that the brain rewards our attentiveness by releasing dopamine means that our brain is working with us to direct us to achievement. Paying attention to your goals feels good, encouraging us to spend more time doing it. This may be why outcome visualization — a favorite technique of self-help gurus involving imagining yourself having completed your objectives — has such a poor track record in clinical studies. It effectively tricks our brain into rewarding us for achieving our goals even though we haven’t done it yet!

But ultimately, our brain wants us to achieve our goals, so that it’s a sense of who we are that can be fulfilled. And that’s pretty good news!

More About Goals Setting

Featured photo credit: Alexa Williams via unsplash.com

Reference

Read Next